Presented at Storage Developer Conference (SNIA SDC 2016):
Docker, NFS, ZFS, and extended attributes
It may be difficult to develop an emotional connection to all of the features of filesystems and filers. Take deduplication for instance. Dedup is cool. Rabin-Karp rolling hash, sliding-window Content Defined Chunking (CDC) – those were cool 15 years ago and remain cool today. Improvements and products (and startups) keep pouring in.
But when it comes to extended file attributes (xattrs), emotions range from a blank stare to dismay. As in: wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot pole.
Come to think of it, part of the problem is – NFS. And part of the NFS problem is that both v3 and v4 do not support xattrs. There is no support whatsoever: none, nada, zilch. And how there can be with no interoperable standard?